Leaving your family for your family

Luke 18:29,30 - And he said unto them, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or parents, or brethren, or wife, or children, for the kingdom of God's sake, Who shall not receive manifold more in this present time, and in the world to come life everlasting.

My life changed and I came to know the Lord after I got married and just when I changed we had a child. There were times I thought how great it would have been if I had not got married and could have dedicated my life to the work of God full time. I need to struggle to remove time from all the responsibilities I have to do God's work.

I know of people who nearly did this and it was sad to see they landed without God and without family.

Today's message talks of one leaving his or her family for the Kingdom of God and such a person is rewarded great in the Kingdom of God. We need to understand this the way Jesus and the Apostles did and not go by the letter but by spirit of the words.

We see Jesus fulfilled His duty towards the family He was implanted into. He did look after His brothers and sisters and mother for it is not written when His legal (step) father ceased to exist. People wrongly assume He lived in a very poor family all because Joseph was a carpenter. They forget the wise men did give precious gifts which would provide a family for a long time. They also forget poverty is a curse and Jesus and his family was not under any curse but were blessed. They may not have been very rich like some Jews believe (they believe Joseph had a flourishing business in construction both in Judaea and Egypt).

We see even when Jesus started His ministry He had some of His family members part of His troupe. His mother was always with Him so were His aunt Mary (Salome) and James and John Zebedee His cousins. Even His brother James was with Him in the later part of His ministry. There are scripture of conversing with His unbelieving brothers in His house, this showed He did not complete or physically leave His family permanently.

The same with His 12 disciples we see them visiting their families even after they become a part of Jesus troupe, like Simon Peter visiting his mother in law, also Judas Iscariot who was son of Simon the leper.

We need to understand God did not make a mistake by putting us in a family and then tell us to leave they as irresponsible people to fend for themselves. It is very sad when we see some 'men of God' do this, I have yet to see one succeed and spiritually grow great in the Kingdom of God doing this. The instruction to the young rich man to give all, leave his family and follow Jesus was a test, for Jesus knew he loved his family and his riches more than God.

The Lord tells us to be responsible people but we need to know that the people of God including those lost and far away from God are also our family and we cannot leave them for the family we are implanted in. We need to set our priorities right, we need to understand the family we are implanted into is a subset of our large family which are the people of God. We live in a tent among a large collection of tents called home. Each and every one who is of God is our family for they are part of the Body of Christ. We may have extra responsibility towards the family we are implanted into but our love cannot be greater to our implanted family than our greater family in Christ.

God said 'love your neighbour as yourself'. Jesus said to His disciples ‘love one another as I have loved you'.

Can I love anyone more than I love myself? Can I love anyone more than Christ loved us? So how can my love be different to my implanted family from the love for my family in Christ?

Leaving our family does not necessary mean leaving but means acknowledging the larger family in Christ. That is why god says we will be receiving manifolds, and to receive this manifold we do not need to die and wait till we go to Heaven. We can receive it here, right now on earth while we are still in this body. We need to only go out are reach out to our family in Christ.

Yesterday evening I was sharing the Word at a house church in the largest slum in the world. At this house church there were some school children and the message the Lord gave me to share had a part about not letting our children walk through fire to be consumed by idols. The message was also for these children. The Lord was not talking of natural children but spiritual children for these young children were ministering / witnessing to others and the Lord considered those as their children. Paul was not married yet he had many children. Once they grew spiritually they were no longer his children but his colleagues.

Our spiritual family is not a small family and it is an every growing and every transforming family as the glory of God increases.

[ Prayer Starter ]
Lord, You have created marriage which is a spiritual bond and this spiritual bond bring about a natural family. Lord, we do not get lost in our natural families but also be aware of the spiritual family which we are part of, bound by our relationship in You. Lord, help us to reach out to our lost family members, to bring them back in You...

This prayer we make in Jesus' Name, Amen.

[ Reference Scriptures ]
Mark 6:3 - Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of James, and Joses, and of Juda, and Simon? and are not his sisters here with us? And they were offended at him.

Luke 8:51 - And when he came into the house, he suffered no man to go in, save Peter, and James, and John, and the father and the mother of the maiden.

Mark 14:3-10
3 And being in Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, as he sat at meat, there came a woman having an alabaster box of ointment of spikenard very precious; and she brake the box, and poured it on his head.
4 And there were some that had indignation within themselves, and said, Why was this waste of the ointment made?
5 For it might have been sold for more than three hundred pence, and have been given to the poor. And they murmured against her.
6 And Jesus said, Let her alone; why trouble ye her? she hath wrought a good work on me.
7 For ye have the poor with you always, and whensoever ye will ye may do them good: but me ye have not always.
8 She hath done what she could: she is come aforehand to anoint my body to the burying.
9 Verily I say unto you, Wheresoever this gospel shall be preached throughout the whole world, this also that she hath done shall be spoken of for a memorial of her.
10 And Judas Iscariot, one of the twelve, went unto the chief priests, to betray him unto them.

John 12:4 - Then saith one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, which should betray him,

The Word of God was given free to us, therefore we should also share it freely with others.
(All rights are with God)